Fascinated since childhood by the singer-instrumentalists of Antiquity and their ever-changing incarnations throughout History, Ricardo Leitão Pedro is one of the few musicians today dedicated to the historical practice of singing al liuto, accompanying himself to different early plucked string instruments.
Born in Porto in 1990, he took the lute at the age of eighteen inspired by a concert by Hespérion XXI and encouraged by his classical guitar teacher Pedro Fesch. A year later he was accepted to a bachelor degree in early music at ESMAE (Porto, Portugal), during which he received an Erasmus scholarship to study at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et Danse de Lyon as student of Eugène Ferré.
In 2013, he moved to Switzerland to continue his studies at the prestigious Schola Cantorum Basiliensis where he completed a bachelor degree in medieval and renaissance lutes with Crawford Young and Marc Lewon and a master degree in singing with Dominique Vellard. He has taken private lessons and attended masterclasses with singers such as Margreet Honig, Gerd Türk and Patrizia Bovi as well as lutenists such as Paul O’Dette, Hopkinson Smith, Eduardo Egüez and Rolf Lislevand.
A member of Concerto di Margherita (EEEmerging ensemble 2017-2018-2019) and I Discordanti (EEEmerging ensemble 2016) with whom he maintains a busy schedule all over Europe, he is regularly invited to collaborate with different ensembles and orchestras both as a singer and a lutenist (Orquestra XXI, Coro Casa da Música, Capella Sanctae Crucis, Troxalida, Agamémnon, La Boz Galana, Domus Artis).
His duo with lutenist Guilherme Barroso won the 2nd prize (1st prize un-attributed) at the JIMA competition (Oeiras, Portugal) in the category of chamber music.
Eager to explore other creative realms, he maintains a habit of improvising with contemporary dancers and circus artists and collaborates in different multi-disciplinary projects. He composed the music for the trapeze solo performance ‘Planisfério’ premiered at the FIS festival in Póvoa do Varzim (Portugal) and was the selected musician of Rostislav Novak (Cirk La Putyka) for his research group at the contemporary circus festival Die Originale hosted at the Berliner Festspiele.
Also invested in musicological research from the performer’s point of view, he is currently preparing an edition of the songs and lute pieces found in the ‘Thibault lute manuscript’ (F-Pn Rés. Vmd ms. 27) to be published by Basel-based label Terem-Music.
Ricardo Leitão Pedro's first solo album "Fantasticaria" dedicated to the music of Bellerofonte Castaldi for voice and theorbo will be released in January 2020.